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PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2014 Sep 25;8(9):e3141. doi: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0003141. eCollection 2014 Sep.

Strongyloides stercoralis: systematic review of barriers to controlling strongyloidiasis for Australian indigenous communities.

Author information

1
Indigenous Research Unit, Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia.
2
Faculty of Medicine, Health and Molecular Sciences, James Cook University, Townsville, Queensland, Australia.
3
Public Health and Tropical Medicine, James Cook University, Townsville, Queensland, Australia; Tropical Health Solutions Pty Ltd, Townsville, Queensland, Australia.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Strongyloides stercoralis infects human hosts mainly through skin contact with contaminated soil. The result is strongyloidiasis, a parasitic disease, with a unique cycle of auto-infection causing a variety of symptoms and signs, with possible fatality from hyper-infection. Australian Indigenous community members, often living in rural and remote settings, are exposed to and infected with S. stercoralis. The aim of this review is to determine barriers to control of strongyloidiasis. The purpose is to contribute to the development of initiatives for prevention, early detection and effective treatment of strongyloidiasis.

METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPLE FINDINGS:

Systematic search reviewing research published 2012 and earlier was conducted. Research articles discussing aspects of strongyloidiasis, context of infection and overall health in Indigenous Australians were reviewed. Based on the PRISMA statement, the systematic search of health databases, Academic Search Premier, Informit, Medline, PubMed, AMED, CINAHL, Health Source Nursing and Academic was conducted. Key search terms included strongyloidiasis, Indigenous, Australia, health, and community. 340 articles were retrieved with 16 original research articles published between 1969 and 2006 meeting criteria. Review found barriers to control defined across three key themes, (1) health status, (2) socioeconomic status, and (3) health care literacy and procedures.

CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE:

This study identifies five points of intervention: (1) develop reporting protocols between health care system and communities; (2) test all Indigenous Australian patients, immunocompromised patients and those exposed to areas with S. stercoralis; (3) health professionals require detailed information on strongyloidiasis and potential for exposure to Indigenous Australian people; (4) to establish testing and treatment initiatives within communities; and (5) to measure and report prevalence rates specific to communities and to act with initiatives based on these results. By defining barriers to control of strongyloidiasis in Australian Indigenous people, improved outcomes of prevention, treatment of strongyloidiasis and increased health overall are attainable.

PMID:
25254655
PMCID:
PMC4177786
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pntd.0003141
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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